No. 22 Gauchos Host UC Riverside in Non-Conference Games This Weekend
March 19, 2009
Sunday, March 22 at 2:00 p.m.
Monday, Marach 23 at 2:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara (12-4) vs. UC Riverside (14-3)
at UCSB's Caesar Uyesaka Stadium
Series record vs. the Highlanders - (14-16)
2008 season record vs. the Highlanders (3-0)
Following a week of final examinations, UCSB will host UC Riverside in a pair of non-conference games on Sunday, March 22 and Monday, March 23. The games will both start at 2:00 p.m. at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium. The teams will meet for a three-game Big West series in Riverside on May 15-17. Individual game and season tickets remain available from the Ticket Office in the Intercollegiate Athletics Building on campus, by calling 805-893-UCSB or online by clicking here. Fans who purchase season tickets will also receive a free baseball cap for each ticket purchased.
'Pink Week' to Promote Breast Cancer Awareness
In its on-going effort to draw awareness to breast cancer and to promote its research, the UCSB Athletics Department will sponsor "Pink Week" at three of its athletics events on Mar. 28, 2009. Three UCSB intercollegiate events, scheduled for Saturday, Mar. 28, have been designated "Pink Week Games." The women's tennis match, slated for 11:00 a.m. on the Robertson Gymnasium Courts, a softball doubleheader scheduled to start at 12:00 p.m. on Campus Diamond, and a 12:00 p.m. women's water polo match at Campus Pool will all be part of the effort. "Pink Week" is part of UCSB Athletics' BE Great initiative.
For the Record: The Best Start Since 1991
UCSB has opened the 2009 season with a 12-4 record. The last time the Gauchos started a season with a 12-4 record was in 1991. That year, they started at 13-4, but eight of the wins were against non-Division 1 competition.
Rank and File
The Gauchos have climbed up in several polls. UCSB is listed as No. 22 by Baseball America, No. 23 by Ping! Baseball, and No. 30 by Collegiate Baseball. The Gauchos are also receiving votes in the USA Today poll and are receiving votes in the National College Baseball Writer's Association poll.
Cummings Named Collegiate Baseball Player of the Week
Senior third baseman Robby Cummings was named one of Collegiate Baseball's national Players of the Week after an outstanding five-game stretch last week. In the Gauchos' last five games, Cummings walloped five home runs and drove in 12 runs. He was 8-for-20 (.400) and scored six runs. In UCSB's 25-11 win over St. Mary's on Sunday, the Chicago native had two home runs. Cummings is the second Gaucho in as many weeks to earn a national honor. Last week, sophomore pitcher Mario Hollands was chosen Collegiate Baseball's Louisville Slugger National Player of the Week.
Probable Starting Lineup
Batting No. Name Pos. Yr. 2009 Notes 1. 16 Brian Gump CF Sr. 24 runs scored leads the Big West 2. 4 Ryan Cavan SS Jr. Has hit in 8 straight, 12 out of 13. 3. 21 Eric Oliver 1B Sr. Had 8 RBI in Sunday's win at SMC 4. 22 Shane Carlson DH Sr. Scored at least 1 run in 6 of last 7 5. 8 Matt Valaika 2B Jr. Has scored 14 runs in 13 starts 6. 10 Robby Cummings 3B Sr. Has homered in 4 straight games 7. 25 Mark Haddow RF So. Tied for Big West lead with 3 triples 8. 26 Marty Mullins C Jr. Hit .333 in his last 8 games 9. 5 Gunnar Terhune LF Jr. Was 7-of-15, .467, at St. Mary's
Probable Starting Pitchers
Sunday 18 Joe Gardner RHP Jr. Leads Big West with 30 Ks, 15 looking Monday 12 Mike Ford RHP Jr. Leads team with 3 wins 11 Mario Hollands LHP So. Allowed just 23 hits in 29 innings. 28 Jesse Meaux RHP So. Has allowed no home runs in 15 IP
Gael Force Offense
The Gauchos went 3-2 last week, losing at UCLA before winning three out of four at St. Mary's. In the four-game weekend series at St. Mary's, UCSB dropped the opener before winning the last three. In Sunday's series finale, the Gauchos scored a season-high 25 runs - all in the first six innings - and won going away, 25-11. It was the most runs that Santa Barbara has scored since tallying the same total against Westmont College on April 15, 2008.
In its 25-11 win at St. Mary's on Sunday, UCSB belted six home runs, just one shy of the school record of seven, set on April 20, 1996 at New Mexico State. The six home runs give the Gauchos 21 on the season, second in the Big West Conference. Santa Barbara has homered in four straight games and in 11 of 16 games overall. Third baseman Robby Cummings leads the team with six circuit clouts, but five Gauchos have hit two or more.
Cummings and Goings
Third baseman Robby Cummings continues to drive runs home in a big way. In four games at St. Mary's last weekend, Cummings had 11 RBI. He now has 29 in just 15 games, tops in the Big West. In addition, the junior entered the week tied for the league lead with six home runs, five of which came in the last four games.
Cavan a Good Time
Junior Ryan Cavan (rhymes with havin') is on fire. He enters the week with an 8-game hitting streak and overall he has hit in 12 of the last 13. In the last eight, he has two or more hits six times, including the last four in a row. He leads the Big West in both batting average (.490) and on base percentage (.571). In the four game series at St. Mary's, he was 8-for-14 (.571) with eight runs scored.
A Positive Balance
UCSB scored 25 runs in the fourth and final game of the series at St. Mary's. The 25-11 margin in the finale against the Gaels gives the Gauchos a 131-80 advantage in runs scored this season. They are averaging 8.2 runs per game as opposed to their opponents 5.0 per game, and they have scored 10 or more five times and nine in two other games.
Run Like the Wind
The Gauchos are third in the Big West in stolen bases with 26, but they lead the league with an 81.2% success rate. UCSB players have been caught stealing just six times in 32 attempts. Leading the way are outfielders Brian Gump and Mark Haddow who have stolen 10-of-12 and 6-of-7 respectively. Nine different players have at least one stolen base and four have stolen multiple bases.
A Little Something Extra
UCSB is hitting .309 on the season with 175 hits in 566 at bats. Even more impressively, the Gauchos have produced a Big West-leading 69 extra base hits in just 16 games, an average of 4.3 per game. In addition to the 21 home runs, which is second in the league, Santa Barbara has a league-leading nine triples and 39 doubles, which ranks second. Eight different UCSB players have at least five extra base hits, led by Robby Cummings (11) and Brian Gump (nine).
Santa Barbara's offense has been outstanding through 16 games in 2009, but the pitching staff has done its part as well. Gaucho hurlers lead the conference with a 3.64 earned run average and fewest hits allowed with 133. They also rank third in strikeouts with 119.
Gardner Keeps Mowing `Em Down
Four starts into the season, Gardner is 2-0 and leading all Gaucho starters with a 1.52 ERA, which is also second in the Big West. After striking out three batters against St. Mary's, he leads all Big West pitchers with 30 strikeouts on the season, exactly half of which have been looking. He is averaging 9.1 strikeouts per nine innings pitched.
A Good Catch
Catcher Marty Mullins has done an outstanding job for UCSB. He has started 12 of 16 games behind the plate for the Gauchos and enters the week hitting .310 with four doubles and a pair of home runs. In addition he has helped the team throw out 10 of 21 would-be base stealers.
The Gaucho Way
As a championship-caliber program, UCSB Athletics recognizes the responsibility that goes with it. This simply means all student-athletes, staff, and fans will behave with a champion's approach, creating a safe environment at games and events. All of those who attend, compete, or work at Gaucho events are caretakers of the passionate, exciting, and great experience UCSB is known for. This is "The Gaucho Way."